Kalmykia has quite diverse mineral and raw stuffs sources. It is based primarily on oil, gas and mineral deposits providing raw materials for the construction industry, etc.
The territory of the republic is highly prospective in terms of the exploration activity, especially search for oil and gas both on the dry land and on the sea shelf of Caspian Sea.
Mineral resources. The basis of the mineral resources of Kalmykia is made by the fuel and energy resources (oil, gas, natural gas liquids), construction materials (sand, clay, shell rock), plain and mineral ground waters, agricultural chemical raw stuffs (potassium and rock salts, dolomites), bischofite raw materials, etc.
The first comprehensive geological mapping of the republic's territory was carried out in 1960. It exposed the deposits of oil and gas in the South East and West of the republic, iodine and bromine waters, sodium chloride and potassium salts in the North.
Fuel and energy resources. The modern gas-and-oil producing industry of Kalmykia is mostly based on the Karpinsky range deposits confined to the secondary oil-and-gas bearing floor. However the major prospectives of oil and gas extraction are associated now with subsalt palaeozoic. Its oil-and-gas bearing was proved by the discovery of large deposits in the adjacent areas of Caspian lowlands.
By January 1, 2001, the summary estimates of hydrocarbon raw stuffs of the Republic of Kalmykia are as follows. 19.843 billion tons of conditional fuel, including 8.207 billion tons of liquids and 11.635 billion tons of gas.
The degree of deep well-boring exploration of the Republic of Kalmykia is relatively low, 7.7 m/sq. km. Total of 582640 linear km at the area of 75.9 thousand sq. meters 1000 to 500 meters deep was bored. The degree of exploration of total initial potential resources is generally 0.5 percent, however, if the potential of the Karpinsky range was explored by 1.6%, the promising areas of the South West of the Caspian lowlands were explored by only 0.05%.
The territory of the Republic of Kalmykia has the total of 39 hydrocarbon raw stuffs deposits, including 18 oil deposits, 10 gas deposits, 6 oil and gas deposits and 5 liquid gas deposits.
Oil extraction is carried out at 23 oil, oil-and-gas and oil-and-liquid-gas sites. The initial reserves of these sites are 633378 thousand tons, the extracted volume made 21462 thousand tons. The total of 129356 thousand tons was extracted during the whole life period of these sites.
The reserves of the natural gas exist at 17 deposits, including 10 gas deposits, 4 oil and gas deposits and 3 oil-gas-and-liquid-gas deposits with the total capacity of 14506 million cubic tons.
In the present time the following enterprises are licensed in the territory of the republic: "Lukoil-Astrakhanmorneft", "Kalmneft", "Kavkaztransgaz", "Kalmnedra", "Kalmpetrol", "Kalmgaz", "Kalmeastern", "KalmTatneft", "Onix Plus", "Kalmyk oil and gas company".
The extraction of oil in 2001 made up 272 thousand tons, the extraction of gas made 48 million cubic meters. The mineral raw material industry of the republic with its fuel and energy reserves is the foundation of the republic's economy.
Groundwaters. The Republic of Kalmykia has 30 deposits with the summary industrial reserves of 257,59 thousand cubic meters per day. 7 deposits out of 9 are in operation now, the rest are preserved. 4 large artesian basins conjoin in the territory of the Republic of Kalmykia: Yergeninsky, North Caspian, Eastern Pre-Caucasus and Aziv-Kuban. The largest reserves of plain and weak-salt groundwaters are proven in the Yergeninsky artesian basin. Its total explored reserves make approximately 111.59 thousand cubic meters per day. Operational reserves of the most of sites are low, 0.25-2.8 thousand cubic meters per day.
Construction materials. The production of construction materials in Kalmykia has reduced in the recent time. In order to meet the industrial and population's demand the constuction materials are brought from the neighboring regions. The coverage of the construction material deficit can be done by launching the brick raw stuffs deposits in all the republic's regions. 29 deposits have been explored in deep detail with the total reserves of 45564 thousand cubic meters. 8 deposits are in stand-by condition, 2 have been run earlier.
Raw bischofites were discovered in Maloderbetovsky and Sarpinsky regions when boring the deep wells at depth 1475 to 2693 meters. The prospecting area is estimated at 360 sq. meters. The estimate for the total amount is 10 billion tons.
Mineral waters. In the Western and Southern parts of the republic there are widespread drinking mineral and therapeutic waters. Mineralization of water 1-15 grams per cubic decimeter. The solutions contain mostly chlorides and sulphates without specific components. The depth of occurrence is 20-200 meters.
Phosphorus rare-earth and uranium raw stuffs. Untraditional phosphprous-containing ores of the Yergeninsky ore region make a practical interest for receiving phosphatic manures for Kalmykia and other regions of Russian South. Yergenonsky ore region occupies the territories of mostly Priyutnensky, Iki-Burulsky and Tselinny regions of the Republic of Kalmykia, they include 13 deposits and a number of ore manifestations of phosphorus and rare-earth materials. The region is relatively well-explored.